On October 12th 2016 The House of Commons Library issued a ‘short note’ that discusses the interaction between UK and EU employment law; the potential consequences of Brexit; and the Government’s position on the issue.
EU employment law provides a minimum standard below which domestic employment law must not fall.
In some cases EU law has entrenched at an international level existing domestic employment rights; for example, rights relating to race discrimination and maternity. In other cases, new rights have been transposed into UK law to comply with emerging EU obligations; for example, agency workers’ rights and limitations on working time.
Subject to the provisions of the EU withdrawal arrangements or subsequent trade agreement, withdrawal from the EU would mean that UK employment rights currently guaranteed by EU law would no longer be so guaranteed. In consequence, a post-Brexit government could seek to amend or remove any of these.